Men of the Time, eleventh edition/Arnold, Matthew

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ARNOLD, Matthew, eldest son of the late Rev. Thomas Arnold, D.D., head master of Rugby, born December 24, 1822, at Laleham, near Staines, where Dr. Arnold then resided with his pupils, was educated at Winchester, Rugby, and Balliol College, Oxford. He was elected Scholar in 1840, won the Newdigate prize for English verse (subject "Cromwell") in 1843, graduated in honours in 1844, and was elected a Fellow of Oriel College in 1845. In 1847 the late Lord Lansdowne nominated him his private seeretary, and he acted in that capacity until his marriage in 1851 with the daughter of the late Mr. Justice Wightman, when he received an appointment as one of the Lay Inspectors of Schools, under the Committee of Council on Education, a post which he still holds. In 1848 the "Strayed Reveller, and other Poems," signed "A.," appeared, followed in 1853 by "Empedocles on Etna, and other Poems," subsequently acknowledged. In 1854 he published a volume of poems in his own name, consisting of new pieces and selections from the two previous volumes. This was followed by a second series, when the first two volumes were withdrawn from circulation. Mr. Arnold, who was elected Professor of Poetry at Oxford in 1857, published in 1858, "Merope," a tragedy after the antique, with a preface, in which the principles of Greek tragedy are discussed, and in 1861, three Lectures "On Translating Homer," which he had delivered before the University of Oxford, and in which he advocated the adoption of the English hexameter as the best equivalent to the Homeric rhythm. In the same year he published the records of the educational systems of France, Germany, and Holland, which he had previously submitted to the Government in the shape of a Report, having been sent, in 1859–60, as Foreign Assistant-Commissioner to the Commissioners appointed to inquire into the state of popular education, to obtain further information respecting the various plans of education adopted in those countries. Mr. Arnold, who has contributed, both in prose and in verse, to periodical literature, collected and published in 1865 some of his prose contributions, under the title of "Essays in Criticism." Mr. Arnold again visited the Continent in 1865 to procure for the Royal Commission on Middle-Class Education information respecting foreign schools for the middle and upper classes, and published in 1867 a volume on this subject. In the same year he published "Lectures on the Study of Celtic Literature;" in 1868, "New Poems;" in 1869, a collected edition of his poems, and "Culture and Anarchy, an Essay in Political and Social Criticism;" in 1870, "St. Paul and Protestantism, with an essay on Puritanism and the Church of England;" in 1871, "Friendship's Garland; being the Conversations, Letters, and Opinions of the late Arminius, Baron von Thunder-Ten-Tronckh;" in 1873, "Literature and Dogma; an Essay towards a better Apprehension of the Bible;" and in 1877 "Last Essays on Church and Religion." In 1867 Mr. Arnold ceased to hold the Poetry Chair at Oxford; in 1869 he received the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws from the University of Edinburgh, and in 1870 from his own University of Oxford. About the year 1876 the Order of Commander of the Crown of Italy was conferred on him by the King of Italy, in acknowledgment of his care of the young Duke of Genoa, who lived in Mr. Arnold's family while pursuing his studies in England. Mr. Arnold's collected poems were re-printed in 1877, and again in 1881. He has edited selections from Isaiah, and from Wordsworth, Byron, Johnson and Burke. His latest work is a volume published in 1882, bearing the title of "Irish Essays and Others." On June 14, 1882, Mr. Arnold delivered at Cambridge the annual Rede Lecture, his subject being "Literature and Science."